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Poems By Poet Patti Masterman  10/1/2014 3:18:20 PM
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In Case of Fire, Break Glass

Of the most difficult, unyielding opponents, foremost is
The blank piece of paper, staring, unblinking, while
The ideas roll off the other side of it, bleating.
They crash and burn in the silent vacuum of space
Leaving you blank-slated and sucking air-
But there are worse things in life than a papercut.
The worst things in life are done to yourself:
Getting the noose ready, the poisons lined up neatly
Holding the electric wires you step into that bucket
Razorblades clutched tightly just in case as
So carefully you weave the oversized shroud, full of finest black- hole threading
With brilliant flashes of metallic where you ripped your own selfhood,
Bloodied, where you dashed your own hopes
With malice aforethought, just to see yourself cringe
Shrinking Violet and Doubting Thomas that you are.
No outsider can wound you as quickly
With such breathtakingly reckless abandon,
Taking no hostages, leaving no stone unturned.
There is no gag can stifle that voice, that waylayer who dissembles-
The blackmailer who can’t be bargained with or paid off;
You can’t stop the car and leave him stranded on some anonymous dirt road
He is there with you for the long-haul, never doubt it.
Best to give him the minimum of attention
And then run like hell whenever he is distracted, when you’ve
Finally convinced him you always listen to his every malodourous insinuation.
And keep looking, looking, looking in every direction
As long as it takes: for the sun to break through;
The sun that shines on the just and the unjust
Wait for it as if your life depends on it:
Look for when the sun finally breaks thru:
Now look: And wait, and keep looking till the hour of the day you can say,
I see it now; there it is, I have been waiting so long
There is that brilliant blue.
Patti Masterman



Into Thin Air

We were never in our pictures,
Though our smiles were frozen fast:
It was the flutter of a shutter-
And you knew it'd never last.

All our dreams ended at daylight,
And real life took over then;
Though the past was fading fast-
We could still remember when.

You can go back to the photos;
You can see the people there-
But they're ghosts, who lost the most
Of themselves, into thin air.
Patti Masterman



Long Distance Runner

I run for years, I run from fires
And frowns and harsh words and barking dogs
I run to love and away from disenchantment
I rush to judgment and retreat from skirmishes
I run headlong into many arms and bounce from chest to chest.

I fall spinning over cliffs and across boundaries
I swim fervently up tributaries and tumble over falls
The longer I go, the farther and faster I run
Almost as if the distance in itself were an achievement
Still at the end to be moveless, and not one remembers me.
Patti Masterman



Palindrome - gardens flower in her blooming breath

gardens flower in her blooming breath
my faces trellis there, linger vines
faint rumors; fueled histories of death
stilled hearts cut from holy valentines
afternoons of stillness belie her quickened feet
image of her haunting silhouette
before that vision is complete
rays of sun disclosing her artless pirouette
female of species: a class apart
reach only once, that soft spectral voice
finding all her heart's incendiary art
loving your only choice
gentled spirit of her fails strength
whispered my latent downfall's story
catch too willingly that glory
hollowed slow, your soul will follow
will soul your slow hollowed glory
that willingly too, catch story
downfall's latent: my whispered strength
fails her of spirit gentled choice;
only your loving art,
incendiary heart's her all finding voice
spectral soft, that once only reach apart
class a species of female pirouette artless,
her disclosing sun of rays
complete is vision that before
silhouette haunting her of image
feet quickened her
belie stillness of afternoons valentines,
holy from cut hearts stilled death
of histories fueled rumors; faint vines
linger there: trellis faces my breath
blooming her in flower gardens.
Patti Masterman
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Poems By Poet Patti Masterman